Two years earlier Wanda Gail Loe (26), similar in age to Donna Lass, disappeared from the Lake Tahoe region on July 27th 1968, five months prior to the Lake Herman Road murders. She worked at the Sunnyside Resort 1850 West Lake Boulevard in Placer County. The resort is 30 miles northwest of the Sahara Tahoe Hotel, now the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, where Donna Lass was last seen.
Her boyfriend Dennis Finn allegedly made a drunken confession to the crime, according to his cousin, however ill feeling between the pair has cast huge doubt on his claims, and no evidence exists linking Dennis Finn to the crime. Later arrested and jailed for an unrelated crime, he committed suicide in 1992.
Were the disappearances of Donna Lass and Wanda Loe connected in any way, and if so, how relevant is the Zodiac Killer or Pines Card to either investigation.
The disappearances were two years apart, their ages were similar and they worked on the fringes of Lake Tahoe, only 30 miles apart. An officer involved in the Wanda Loe case, Sergeant Perea, believed she may be buried in the Carpenter Valley area, near Truckee. Carpenter Valley Road is a mere four miles from Donner Lake and Donner Pass Road.
The following is not meant to indicate any Zodiac connection, but its locality in relation to the Donna Lass case is worthy of mention.
Approximately eleven years after the disappearance of Donna Lass, on January 12th 1982, two young women, Julie Schossow (25) and Marilyn Putt (27), disappeared from South Lake Tahoe. Their bodies were recovered several months later.
On June 6th 1982 Marilyn Putt's body was found in the South Fork of the American River, one mile west of Chili Bar. The police press release stated “Her body had been weighted down with chains and binding material and the cause of death appears to be ligature strangulation, with the time of death being estimated at six to eight weeks prior to her body being found.” Julie Schossow was discovered only a short distance away on July 9th 1982. The women had been bound and strangled with a ligature. Both victims worked as blackjack dealers at Harrah's Lake Tahoe Casino and were last seen leaving the Rendevouz Bar at Harrah's around midnight. This casino is only 359 meters from the Sahara Tahoe Hotel and Casino, where Donna Lass had worked in 1970. Reports circled about a possible interaction with some men, indicating that the women may have traveled with them to the Bay Area, although this is unsubstantiated.